1895/39 Regina vs. Lee Heng Yum – gaming, Victoria (good description of Fan Tan Alley)
As part of the Chinese Historical Wrongs Legacy Initiative, the BC Archives has digitized a selection of documents related to criminal prosecutions against the Chinese community from 1866 to 1914, found in GR-0419. These are mainly records created as part of the preliminary hearing held before a judge in order to determine whether there was sufficient evidence to proceed to trial. There are often lengthy witness statements, and cross examinations by both prosecution and defense lawyers. The eventual verdict is sometimes recorded on the outside of the docket. They offer a fascinating glimpse into 19th and early 20th century criminal activity around the province, and ways in which the Chinese community was stereotyped. The records offered for transcription here are a small selection; for additional digitized material from GR-0419 click here.
*Please note that archival source materials are original historical documents that have not been censored, reviewed or otherwise altered by the Royal BC Museum. Some materials may contain content that is racist, sexist or otherwise offensive. In addition, GR-0419 records deal with subjects such as assault, murder and abuse, which may upset some readers. The Royal BC Museum is only the custodian of archival materials; the content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Royal BC Museum.
*All transcriptions are provided by volunteers, and the accuracy of the transcriptions is not guaranteed. Please be sure to verify the information by viewing the image record, or visiting the BC Archives in person.
INFORMATION AND COMPLAINT FOR AN INDICTABLE OFFENCE. CANADA. province of British Columbia City of Victoria The information and complaint of Wong Hip Lee, taken this 1st day of December in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and ninety-four, before the undersigned Police Magistrate in and for the said City of Victoria, who says that Lee Heng Yum of Victoria on the 28th day of November, at the City of Victoria aforesaid, did unlawfully keep a common gaming house, situate on the premises known as 43 Fisgard Street in the said City of Victoria, contrary to section 198 of the Criminal Code, 1892. (Signature in Chinese).